Walt Macdonald, Executive Vice President and COO of Educational Testing Services, or ETS, that conducts the GRE and TOEFL tests, was in India recently to give away the TOEFL Scholarship Program awards. He spoke to Anusha Subramanian about ETS and its outlook towards emerging markets and India. Edited excerpts:
On scholarship programmes: This year we gave away nine TOEFL Scholarship Program awards to high-performing students in India worth $60,000. The China Program consists of three awards of $5,000 each and 45 awards of $1,500 each. ETS uses inputs from the field to develop the scholarship programmes for each country, so factors like the number and size of the awards may vary.
ETS services in India: We are growing at around five per cent in India in the number of students taking the tests annually. We have recently launched the TOEFL Customer Call Centre for Indian students and are also using Facebook to connect with students here.
GRE scores in B-schools: Today about 600 business schools globally accept GRE scores for MBA admissions. We are in talks with Indian B-schools to accept GRE scores as well (at present most accept Combined Admission Test, or CAT, scores)
On emerging markets: English language tests are growing in the emerging markets. So we have started the scholarship programmes in China, Taiwan, Korea and Japan. In fact, China is among the top countries for test takers after India and the US for TOEFL and GRE.